Low-Maintenance House Plants

Low-Maintenance House Plants

You just ordered your first planter from pot+plant, now what? You're going to need to go out and buy a plant to pair with it! For people who don't have a green thumb, and kill everything you touch, don't be wary because I have a list of house plants that require minimal water, low-light, and hardly any care. 

First up on my list of low-maintenance house plants is Dracaena trifasciata, also know as the snake plant. A snake plant is the ideal choice for beginner house planters because they are nearly impossible to killThese popular house plants thrive in bright, indirect light, but can get by just as well in the darkest corners of your house. But what really makes these plants so easy to take care of is the minimal amounts of water they require. In the winter months these plants can get by with a light watering once every month or two, while in the warmer months once every couple weeks will do the trick. Contrary to common belief, these plants most likely will die by being overwatered than by being under watered. With as many cultivars as there are letters in its scientific name, your entire house could be scattered with snake plants and not one plant will look the same as the other. Some of my personal favorite cultivars are 'Night Owl', 'Moonshine', and the classic 'Laurentii'. 

Next up on my list is Aloe vera. If by some chance you've never seen an aloe plant, you've certainly used the gel from its leaves as a quick relief for sunburn. Aloe plants come in many shapes and sizes, but they all mostly require the same level of care. These plants, which are actually in the succulent family, prefer bright, indirect light, but can survive in a low-light room. Aloe plants handle drought well, but prefer to be lightly watered once every couple of weeks. As with the snake plant, these plants will likely be killed by overwatering than under watering so keep a steady hand while watering these plants. Aloe vera has over 500 species, so like I stated with the snake plant, your whole house could be filled with this low maintenance house plant and none of them would look the same! 

Third on my list, but number one in my heart are cactus'. Cactus' are by far the easiest plants to care for, and the best plants for beginners. If you are looking to add a southwestern vibe into your house, or just want something that looks really cool and needs minimal maintenance, cactus' are the way to go. Although it is a common misconception that cactus' don't need water because they're from the desert, the truth of the matter is that cactus' will thrive and grow with regular watering in the correct sized container. Once every two weeks is an ideal watering schedule, with small amounts of fertilizer being applied in the summer months. Bright, indirect sun light is the ideal type of environment for these plants as too much sun may cause them to burn. If they are in direct sun, be sure to rotate your planter so one side doesn't get all of the sun all of the time. With over 2,000 species of cacti that come in all shapes and sizes, there is sure to be something that catches your eye at your local nursery that you can bring home for your new planter. 

Stay tuned next week for my next installment of low-maintenance house plants!

Pete Giuffre

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